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Pink Triangle Press publishes results of industry-first PTP Pink Paper

Study finds progress but significant work yet to be done for meaningful 2SLGBTQIA+ representation

"Hollywood is yesterday, forever catching up tomorrow with what's happening today."
Legendary queer screen critic Vito Russo, The Celluloid Closet

BANFF, AB, June 11, 2024 /PRNewswire/ - Pink Triangle Press is proud to announce the release of the inaugural PTP Pink Paper highlighting the current state of 2SLGBTQIA+ representation on screens in the film, television, streaming and videogame industries. The report marks the first-ever comprehensive look at the entertainment industry in both English and French markets in Canada. The PTP Pink Paper was released today at the Banff World Media Festival (BANFF) in Banff, Alberta, Canada by Pink Triangle Press CEO David Walberg. The full report is available now at www.pinkpaper.ca.  

The PTP Pink Paper comes at a time when representation is more important than ever as data shows support for 2SLGBTQIA+ rights and visibility in Canada is on the decline.  The PTP Pink Paper's insights reflect the same sentiment with 93% of industry professionals agreeing that 2SLGBTQIA+ representation on Canadian screens is extremely important to them and relates to how they are viewed and treated in society.

"Historically, queer and trans screen representation has been painful ? relying on twisted stereotypes and degrading vilification. Our stories have been censored, revised or overlooked," says Walberg. "There has been an explosion of queer characters recently, but our research reveals important issues and gaps, both in screen portrayals and the experience of industry workers.

The PTP Pink Paper research was conducted from late 2023 through to 2024 and covers English and French markets in Canada. The project was commissioned by Pink Triangle Press and conducted by Maru Matchbox and Signal Hill Insights research companies, and written by academic Alex Custodio. Surveying professionals in film, TV, streaming and videogame industries, the PTP Pink Paper findings show alignment in the need for representation.

While 85% of professionals observe that the on-screen portrayal of 2SLGBTQIA+ characters has improved in the past 5 years, there remains a significant gap in the amount, nature of representation and the narrowness of representation within 2SLGBTQIA+. Specifically the amount of queer and trans characters in Canadian media and how 2SLGBTQIA+ people are portrayed.

There are notable barriers to driving representation on screen including a lack of 2SLGBTQIA+ decision-makers, cautious industry executives, storytelling tropes, and stereotypes to name a few. The vast majority of industry professionals agree that portrayal of 2SLGBTQIA+ characters is frequently superficial (85%), stereotypical (84%), or focused solely on trauma (88%).

To present the findings, Walberg was joined on a panel by Actor/Writer/Producer Emily Hampshire (Schitt's Creek), Actress Cassandra James (General Hospital), Michelle Mama, co-founder of Gay Agenda, and Writer/Actor/Producer Alexander Nunez (Moonshine) of Border2Border Entertainment moderated by Michael Serapio of CPAC.

The survey's results show there is still work to be done with 82% of respondents believing 2SLGBTQIA+ representation is uneven. Two-Spirit, trans, and gender-diverse character identities are seen to be more underrepresented than other 2SLGBTQIA+ identities, especially compared to gay men. While gay men are the best-represented group, they still only represent 7% presence in the top shows in English and French Canada.

Pink Triangle Press hopes that the inaugural PTP Pink Paper will help drive effective representation both on screen and in the funding process in Canada and globally. The findings support this with 66% of Canadian media industry professionals not believing that Canadian-funded content sufficiently supports the inclusion of 2SLGBTQIA+ themes, stories, and professionals.

2SLGBTQIA+ identities remain critically underrepresented across the Canadian media landscape. Nuanced, meaningful, and authentic 2SLGBTQIA+ stories are particularly lacking.

There remains an immense opportunity to better represent queer voices on-screen with  90% of professionals agreeing that Canadian audiences want to see authentic 2SLGBTQIA+ representation, two-thirds of whom feel strongly about this sentiment.

Overall, those who offered their voices to the PTP Pink Paper want to see more authentic, complex, and inclusive representation, a wider variety of narratives, genres and themes that include 2SLGBTQIA+  characters, behind-the-scenes representation at all levels and increased financial, promotional, and educational support for 2SLGBTQIA+ content and professionals.

But this is just the tip of the rainbow, the PTP Pink Paper dives into all aspects of representation on screen with findings that can drive true change in our industry at large. Entertainment professionals are encouraged to read the PTP Pink Paper in its entirety including its methodology at www.pinkpaper.ca.

About Pink Triangle Press:
Pink Triangle Press (PTP) is Canada's leading 2SLGBTQIA+ media and content organization. Founded in 1971, Pink Triangle Press produces 2SLGBTQIA+ journalism at Xtra Magazine and through a variety of content distribution channels in Canada and abroad. The Press also operates travel site Pink Ticket Travel, a gay adult dating website and has produced a number of television projects. The organization began as a gay liberation newspaper, The Body Politic, named by Masthead magazine as one of "Canada's 20 most influential magazines of all time."

SOURCE Pink Triangle Press

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